About Us



 Norine Hill, Oneida Nation of the Thames
Chief Executive Officer/Founder – Native Women In Need

Norine Hill, Founder of Native Women In Need created the vision of women supporting other women during times of crisis.  The vision turned into a Sisterhood with Haudenosaunee (People of the Longhouse) teachings of friendship, respect and trust.  Elders came forward to support the vision and became the Board of Directors.  Norine was appointed by the Board as the Chief Executive Officer months later. Within a year, Native Women In Need became a non-profit charitable 501 (C) (3) organization.  Norine has over 25 years of Executive Management experience building non-profits, cultural programs, networking and collaborations with various Tribal entities while managing and building infrastructure.  Norine is a survivor of domestic violence, homelessness, and sexual abuse.  Her strong leadership, faith and love for Native Women has elevated the volunteer group to a non-profit charitable organization covering several Counties in Washington State.  Norine lives a traditional lifestyle in recovery for 13 years free from drugs and alcohol.   She continues to create partnerships, collaborations and networking across Washington State covering several counties to ensure Native women have the support necessary to fulfill their goals. 

Elder Ramona Ahto, CDP, BAS - Yakama Nation,
Board of Directors Chair

Elder Ramona Ahto's thirty-seven years of work in the addictions field with 34 years in recovery, a strong cultural background and exemplary facilitation skills are an asset to Native Women In Need Cultural Services, Chemical Dependency Classes specializing in grief and loss.  She is a highly respected Elder in the Native AA Community and Native American community of Seattle. A member of the Shaker Church with a Chemical Dependency license, BAS, and 30 years of cultural teaching experience and knowledge are a true blessing to the NWIN Board.  Mona also appeared in the television series “Northern Exposure,” and was recently honored the 2014 Enduring Spirit Award.  



Henry M. Cagey, Councilman - Lummi Nation
Board of Director Treasurer
Henry Cagey is a strong leader known across Indian Country for his dedication towards changing policy and accessing funds to strengthen health and wellness for Indian people serving as Board Member and Chair for several non-profits.  His commitment to the Lummi Nation for 26 years resulted in Directors of TERO, Vocational Rehabilitation, and Economic Development Director, with 17 years’ on the Lummi Indian Business Council, 12 years of which were spent serving as Tribal Chairman.  Henry has shaped many federal policies including health, housing, natural resources, transportation, and education.  His funding accomplishments include federal Departments of Transportation, Labor, the Interior, Health and Human Services, Indian Health Service, Veterans Administration, Department of Agriculture, Education, and Commerce with $25 million in support to Lummi Nation priorities.



Sister Julie Codd, SSJP
Board of Director Secretary

Sister Julie Codd is a treasure to have join the NWIN Leadership Team months after its creation.  She has been integral to garner support in the faith communities of Western Washington for NWIN awareness and participants needs.  Her soft spoken words and sweet spirit is a blessing to the leadership of NWIN.  Born February 1962 entered the Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace in Bellingham, WA.  She was a catalyst in the evolution of the Chief Seattle Club and has maintained an active and vibrant ministry with Native American communities before, during and since her time as Director of the Center. Sister Julie began her work in the Native American community 36 years ago with the Swinomish Tribe.  She received the Gertrude Apel 2012 Pioneering Spirit Award.

Elder Alma Goddard, Mexican/Native American (Yaqui)
Board of Directors - Native Women In Need
Elder Alma Goddard is an active member for over 30 years in the movement to end violence against women.  Her work at the Seattle Indian Health Board has created several collaborations, DV programs on and off-reserve.  Alma’s work with the Women Spirit Coalition in outreach, facilitation of many workshops and training in areas of domestic violence and sexual assault is highly respected amongst the Pacific Northwest Tribes.  Alma’s work in Indian Country also includes presentations and workshops on internalized oppression, historical and intergenerational trauma, and healing.  Alma's personal experience and knowledge as a cancer survivor, survivor of domestic violence, foster child and compassion to continue in the movement to end violence against women is a definite asset to the NWIN Leadership Team!    

Deborah Parker, Tulalip Tribes
Policy Analyst - Native Women In Need

Deborah  joined the NWIN Team as Policy Analyst in early 2016.  Prior to her new role, Deborah was an Honorary Board Member since 2013, after eight months of supporting NWIN through advocacy, donation of funds and house items along with clothing. She is known nationally in advocating the passage of the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act. Her work in D.C. with the Obama Administration amongst many other environmental roles protecting the Salish Sea, Board Member on the Native Indigenous Women's Resource Council, and former Vice-Chair of Tulalip Tribes.  Her public speaking engagements travel across the U.S. with recent work in Paris at World Indigenous Environmental events.  Deborah volunteers her time supporting native sisters in need suffering from various forms of violence. She is a true blessing to Indian Country representing and protecting our Earth Mother and the rights of Native Sisters at the global level.


Elder Arlene Red Elk, MA – Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe
Circle of Life Workshop Series Facilitator

Arlene is a member of the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe and Lead Facilitator and cultural designer of the Circle of Life 10 workshop series.  Arlene’s four decades of experience serving hundreds of women is known across Indian Country due to her creative talents to design such programs as the original Ina Maka at United Indians of All Tribes. With over 30 years in recovery, a Masters, specializing in the field of sexual abuse, domestic violence and trauma, Arlene has mastered the skills of combining culture to clinical practice.  Her work and compassion as a survivor of DV and sexual abuse provided her the responsibility by the Native American Church to conduct sweatlodge for women over thirty years ago.   

Olive Lefferson, BA- Blackfeet Tribe
Lead Volunteer DV Advocate

Olive is a member of the Blackfeet Tribe and Lead DV Volunteer Advocate.  Olive has worked with low-income homeless Native women in various capacities in employment and volunteerism including people of all ages, ethnicities, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic levels, and religions.  Her passion to work with survivors of domestic violence is demonstrated through her volunteer work as a trained member of the Seattle Police Department's Victim Support Team, experience and knowledge with King County's DV Court system, and efforts in maintaining Seattle Native homeless weekly writing groups. Her experience, knowledge and compassion for her native homeless community are a necessity in her work with Native American/Alaskan Native female DV Survivors who make up 100 percent of current NWIN participants.  Olive is a pure blessing from Creator to be a part of the NWIN team! 



Shana Greenberg Barehand -- Mono Indian and Chicana - Attorney 
NWIN Volunteer Advisory Council Member -  Non-Profit Pro Bono Attorney

 Shana has devoted much of her professional life to Indian Country, attending years of Tribal Leadership forums advising and guiding Tribes in Taxation with years of volunteer work at Native Women Leadership Forums and other pro bono family violence legal support.  Shana works as the Liaison to tribal governments, in the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs in the Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Shana began volunteering after participating in the cultural services.  Shana is a survivor of domestic violence.  She is now dedicated member of the NWIN family offering various professional expertise in legal and tax services.

  Debora Juarez - Blackfeet Nation - Attorney
NWIN Volunteer Advisory Council Member - Domestic Violence Pro Bono Court Support



Debora  Juarez is a well known leader and Native Women hero to many in Indian Country overcoming all odds since childhood, devoting over 30 years to Indian Country in various legal capacities on several high profile court issues facing NW Pacific Tribes.  Debora's commitment to serving her community is showcased in her legal expertise as former King County Superior Court Judge, Public Defender and Prosecutor in criminal law including domestic violence cases, and former Director to Governor's Office on Indian Affairs.  Her recent election as the first Indigenous Native to the Seattle City Council has inspired many people of all walks of life.  She has opened many doors to raise the profile of NWIN services.  NWIN is grateful for her initial volunteer services in providing guidance in domestic violence advocacy and court proceedings and her devotion in supporting her Native Sisters reach their potential! We are very blessed to have her in our NWIN family. 

Roxanne Phinney BA - Assiniboine from Ft. Bellnap

    NWIN Volunteer Advisory Member - Indian Child Welfare / Executive Management Mentor

 Roxanne has over 35 years of experience in social services managing domestic violence and sexual abuse programs for Native American women in the state of Washington specializing in the field of Indian Child Welfare  Roxanne's experience and ethics providing oversight to Elders in the design of cultural services of the past is an integral part of the NWIN Team. Her compassion and love for her people is compelling.  Roxanne provides guidance and advisory services for all NWIN ICW Advocacy cases.

R. Linda Looking, Assiniboine Sioux - Ft. Peck Tribes

Volunteer Resource Advisory Council - Addictions / Recovery Mentor 

Linda serves Indian Country’s non-profit treatment industry with 40 years of service at the Thunderbird Treatment Center, United Indians of All Tribes and co-founder of Native American Rehabilitation Association of the Northwest (NARA) in Portland, OR.  Linda has valuable work experience in all capacities of treatment implementing Native culture to all services, partnering and collaborating with local Tribes and raising awareness on the importance of Native values. and Traditions carrying many teachings and songs to support survivors of violence.  As a Survivor of homelessness, domestic violence and sexual abuse, she carries credentials in Levels I, II and II of Counseling, Clinical Supervisor, Tribal Liaison and Treatment Director.  Her years of service coupled with 39 years in recovery brings a tremendous wealth of expertise and knowledge to the NWIN family as a key Mentor for the Recovery and Addictions cultural services. We are very blessed to have her on our team!


Native Women In Need is 100% staffed by individuals of Native American/Alaska Native descent, all survivors of domestic violence with significant diversity of life experiences, education, traditional teachings, and expertise. NWINs team of Native leader’s and Native Advisory Members have 37 years working with Tribes and urban centers specializing in domestic violence, sexual abuse, addictions and leadership.  NWIN Elders combined have knowledge and experience serving thousands of Native female survivors over a period of four decades with 140 years in recovery.  Our non-native Board member adopted into the Swinomish Tribe carries 37 years working in Indian Country specializing in chronic homelessness. 






Velma R. Wyena, “Umtahloot” – Yakama Nation/Muckleshoot
Cultural Services Support – Native Women In Need Mentorship Program

 Velma is a candidate in the Chemical Dependency Program at Northwest Indian College, Muckleshoot Campus.  She gains internship hours with lead NWINs lead facilitators in cultural services and Native Chemical Dependency classes.  She received her Recovery Coach Training through Northwest Indian Treatment Center and joined the NWIN Mentorship program in January 2014.  Velma’s leadership and compassion for native women and four years of sobriety, promoted her to Native Women In Recovery House Manager.  Velma conducts and supports Elders at the Gathering of Women community sweats from the surrounding Tribes and works with Circle of Life Series Facilitator as the Cultural Services Support.  We are very pleased to have her join the NWIN team

   Jolene Hendrix, Unangan (Aleut)
Volunteer Resource Research/Advocate

Jolene Hendrix, visionary to Native Women In Need holds years of personal experience in overcoming trauma and grief.  She maintains her compassion and hope through her strong faith in her higher power in providing resource and referrals to Native women covering several areas.  Her strong insight offers a variety of services to Native Women In Need founding the Revolutionary Prayer Circle through social media supporting women across the Nation in prayer nightly at 9:30 p.m.  



Dorothy M. Yahtin – Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs/Yakama Nation 
Head Cook – Native Women In Need Mentorship Program

Dorothy’s compassion for Native women and life experiences in all areas we service and strong prayers and belief in her faith has kept her on her path of sobriety.  Dorothy’s love for her people is demonstrated in her skills in food preparation.  She joined the Mentorship Program as NWIN’s Head Cook for all cultural activities and Advocate since the fall of 2013.  She enjoys spending time with her 5 children, grandchildren and dogs, hobbies include beautiful beadwork and listening to music.  She is a pleasure to have around and is always complimented on her exemplary cooking skills!  NWIN continues to support Dorothy in her entrepreneurship plans in catering and permanent housing.


 Jennifer Wallen, M. ED. - White Mountain Apache
Advocate/Cultural Support - Native Women In Need Mentorship Program

Jennifer's experience, education and cultural knowledge is an asset to NWIN Mentorship program.  Joining NWIN Mentorship services in early summer of 2014, she has volunteered her time prior as an Advocate to support Native women seeking essential services in Seattle.  Her extensive cultural knowledge, songs and teachings provides much needed cultural support and healing in the Gathering of Women Sweats.  Jen’s goals is to design future workshops and facilitate classes to enhance NWIN cultural services.  With her cultural knowledge and teachings and skills in basketry, cedar and other crafts she is loved in her work with the Elders and warmly welcomed by all.    

Corinna Stasso, Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes
Cultural Services Support - Native Women In Need Mentorship Program

Raised in Seattle and Spokane, Corinna enjoys crafts and learning new projects.  She loves supporting the Circle of Life craft activities, traditional foods and meeting a lot of strong woman along the way.   Corinna believes in conservation and helping the environment and has her own sweet grass and organic veggies garden with the “three sisters” corn, beans and squash.  Her goal is to teach crafts, run sweats and grow healthy Native traditional foods to future generations to promote a healthier way of living. 

 “I always want to improve myself and learn from others and I am thankful to Native Women In Need Mentorship Program.  It helps keep me going on a better path and positive mindset in an urban environment.  It's a struggle to hang on to this simple luxury of sweat.  Living in a city isn't always easy for these things and this program helps with urban Native woman who otherwise couldn't have a place to sweat to potluck to pray together or to empower one another.  Thanks for inviting me to be a part of the Native Women In Need community.


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